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Jan, can you share the methodology you use to control for SAT, ACT, and previous GPA?  I know I've read an article somewhere that goes over that very thing, but for the life of me I cannot find it.  Our students use us voluntarily (with the exception of a few narrowly defined populations for whom tutoring is mandatory), so our population is self-selecting, and I'm not sure that comparing those who came for tutoring and those who did not is an apples-to-apples comparison in our case.  I read an article last year that did a regression analysis to determine a "predicted" grade for students in, say, college algebra, based on their high school GPA and test scores.  The article then compared course grades for students who did and did not receive tutoring against the "predicted" course grades to measure the impact of tutoring.  Our institutional research office wants to see the article so they can replicate the methodology, but for the life of me I cannot find the article now.  Would you be willing to share your methodology?



Michele Costabile Doney
Coordinator, Math and Science Tutoring
John Jay College of Criminal Justice
646-557-4595    [log in to unmask]
-----Original Message-----
From: Open Forum for Learning Assistance Professionals [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Jan Norton
Sent: Friday, November 14, 2008 8:14 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: Comparing # of visits to a tutoring center and grades

TutorTrac will generate an end-of-semester report (if you're importing student data, including grades) that mirrors the UMKC SI report: it compares grades of those who attend SI or tutoring with those who do not attend.  You can break it down by different categories/number of visits.  It's an amazing time-saver, but the comparison can be done by hand -- it's a logically easy process, though it can take time.

I also export from TutorTrac our raw data in order to study correlations between numbers of visits and grades in courses tutored.  You can also run calculations (e.g., partial correlation) that let you statistically eliminate the predictable impact of ACT/SAT scores and previous GPA on student grades, thus letting you look a little more specifically at the likely impact of tutoring and/or SI and/or other interventions and programs you are running.

As others have mentioned, the effort is well worth the time for the accountability and professionalism that it brings to your program.

----- Original Message -----
From: Kathryn Van Wagoner <[log in to unmask]>
Date: Thursday, November 13, 2008 5:52 pm
Subject: Re: Comparing # of visits to a tutoring center and grades
To: [log in to unmask]

> I do this.
> In Tutor Trac, I run a list of all students and their number of
> visits. I have, somewhat arbitrarily, chosen 15 as the cut-off
> to define "frequent user." It is an average of one visit per
> week.   I put my list in excel, sort by number of
> visits and delete all the under-15-visits students. I send the
> remaining list (name and ID # of about 425 students) to
> Institutional Research.  They send back a grade
> distribution by course.  I then figure out the pass rate of
> that cohort of students in each course, (I'm just looking at
> math) and I compare it to the department avg pass rates per
> course.  Over the past few years, the frequent lab users
> pass rate ranges 15 - 30 percentage points higher than
> department average.
>
> The first time I looked at this data, I compared dept pass rates
> to all lab users, 10+ visits and 15+ visits.  Here is the
> first set of outcomes that I ran. The significant change in pass
> rates is between the 10 visits and 15 visits.
>
> Fall 2005
> Pass Rates Department Average All Math Lab users 10 or more
> visits 15 or more  visits
> MAT 0950 62% 71% 64% 83%
> MAT 0990 54% 57% 60% 74%
> MATH 1050 62% 66% 67% 82%
>
>
> Pass Rates for all courses
> All Math Lab users 15 or more  visits
> Fall 2005 65% 78%
> Spring 2006 67% 78%
> Fall 2006 67% 78%
> Spring 2007 68% 80%
>
>
> I have found this to be very valuable.  I am using these
> outcomes to promote the lab.
>
>
>
> Kathryn Van Wagoner
> Utah Valley University
> Math Lab Manager
> 801-863-8411
> [log in to unmask]
>
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Jan Norton, Director
Center for Academic Resources
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
(920) 424-3419

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